BrainWise and Facelessness: The Internet’s “Gyges Effect”

Posted On: February 19, 2015

Individuals who have mastered the 10 Wise Ways recognize that lizard brain reactions drive the behaviors of individuals who attack others anonymously with hateful, bigoted, racist, and misogynist tweets and Internet posts. When police contact individuals who send these types of messages, they (and their parents, if the perpetrators are underage) are shocked. They see themselves as good citizens, and wonder why the police are involved. They discount the seriousness of their hateful messages by asking, “how could anyone believe or be affected by what is said on the Internet?” Many others who are not confronted would also say there is “nothing wrong” with what they are doing and that their behavior is “harmless.”

These types of vicious attacks are not new, but the Internet’s ability to allow someone to be anonymous or to distance themselves from their victims has facilitated the ease and frequency of these types of attacks. The results are disturbing, not only for the victims of the attacks, but also because the use of social media somehow allows perpetrators to justify their actions or to dismiss them as harmless. This denial demonstrates a lack of empathy, a higher-level thinking skill that encompasses a knowledge of and an understanding of all BrainWise’s 10 Wise Ways.

BrainWise teaches empathy throughout the program, starting with Wise Way #3: Recognize Red Flag warnings, which include being sensitive to the body language and facial emotions of others. Wise Way #4, Exit the Emotions Elevators, addresses how to react to the emotions these signals elicit. Wise Way #7, Consider the Consequences of your choices, teaches the importance of considering the Consequences Affecting Others (CAO), and Wise Way #10 teaches that to Communicate Effectively, you must take other people’s Point of View (POV) and recognize differences. These lessons must be practiced in conjunction with all the Wise Ways in order for an individual to make good choices and decisions.

The following articles report on the problem of the Gyges Effect (anonymous deviant behaviors) the epidemic of facelessness, and the growing alienation of children and weakening of their social skills:

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/15/opinion/sunday/the-epidemic-of-facelessness.html?_r=0

http://www.wsj.com/articles/how-to-find-a-best-friend-1424213995?mod=djem10point.

The BrainWise Program provides the skills to decrease and help prevent these types of behaviors.

Please follow and like us:

BrainWise and Indigenous Populations

In college, Matt Sena taught BrainWise at a youth center in Grand Junction, Colorado and wrote his Master Thesis on BrainWise and young fathers. Twenty-five years later, he is a BrainWise Master Instructor, member of the BrainWise Board of Directors, and cherished colleague. Matt has taught BrainWise to thousands of youth and adults, written grants, […]

Read More »

BrainWise is the Foundation for My Work

“Few professionals do what I do,” said Gary Brayton, PhD, a Clinical Social Worker in Alberta, Canada. Dr. Brayton specializes in treating children and youth who have engaged in sexually intrusive behaviors. He has been teaching BrainWise since he was introduced to the program at a conference 12years ago. “It is the foundation for my […]

Read More »

Helpers Reinforce BrainWise Learning

BrainWise instructors are passionate about obtaining successful outcomes and engage others to ensure children practice their newly learned skills. A key strategy involves collaborating with helpers – family members, school staff, community and church members, health providers, and others – to reinforce children’s Wizard Brain behaviors. The interaction between helpers and BrainWise-informed children varies in […]

Read More »